from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia
- n. A worm with a shell; a tubicolous annelid with a hard case, as a serpula. See cut under Serpula.
- n. A mollusk of the family Dentaliidæ; a tooth-shell. See cut under tooth-shell.
Sorry, no etymologies found.
And there came into his head a horror of taking the lives of creatures for his own use -- the shell-worm that writhed as he pulled it from the shell; the bright fish that came up struggling and gasping from the water, and that fought under his hand -- and at last he made up his mind that he would take no more life, though how he would live he knew not; and as for the world of men, he became very desirous to help a little as best he could; and there being at this time a wreck in the bay, when a boat and all on board were lost, he thought that he would wish, if he could, to keep a fire lit on dark nights, so that ships that passed should see that there was a dwelling there, and so keep farther away from the dangerous rocks.